CAC Card Reader Software: How to use it and more

The Common Access Card is a means of personal identification that lets authorized personnel access secure areas, installations, computers and networks. Such a card can be read with a CAC reader. These are mostly used by the military and several other agencies that are under the jurisdiction of the Department of Defense. CAC's use an elaborate system of physical devices, systems, secure networks and servers in order to enable identification of personnel and determine their levels of authorization. At secure military installations, there are specific systems to deal with this process of identification. However, not all systems and installations may have the dedicated hardware and CAC card reader software required for the process.

CAC Card Reader Software

Theoretically, any computer can be converted into a CAC card reader with the appropriate software. There are many installations that use CAC's for identification but yet can't really be defined as secure installations. For example, an authorized person who holds a CAC and a Cac Reader may need to access a secure system or network in a different installation during the course of his/her work. However since they're located outside of the secure network, they will have no option other than to transmit their access information and PIN over the unsecured network. This creates a situation where sensitive identification information can be intercepted, cracked and misused by unauthorized individuals.

This was a real security issue that was existent since back in the days when networks had to be accessed by personnel who were forced to login from more conventional systems. The introduction of external USB card readers and the development of various kinds of CAC card reader software applications have do benefit overall security greatly, however have not eliminated the threat of interception on unsecured networks. These days it is common to find many systems at agencies associated with the DoD supporting external CAC card readers.

Advantage of external Cac Readers

cac card reader software

The immediate advantage of external USB CAC card readers and CAC card reader software is their ability to transform almost any conventional computer into a secure authentication and access point. The card needs to be inserted into the reader, the reader derives access information directly from the card and the PIN is entered into the software window by the card holder when prompted to do so. The entire process of identification and authentication is carried out within the CAC card reader software module. Since the entire process happens within the shell of the software, the chances of anyone intercepting both information from the card reader and the software is highly unlikely.

External CAC card readers and CAC card reader software completely revolutionized the way DoD related agencies operate and communicate amongst one another. With today's technology, even personnel operating from remote locations can log into secure networks and servers using nothing but their laptops, their military Cac and compatible CAC card reader software and a satellite connection. As of today, the advent of the Cac card reader and Cac card reader software has enabled millions of civilians and military personnel to authenticate themselves, communicate safely and go about their daily work even from outside the confines of secure installations and networks.

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